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Writing home in recent Irish memoirs and autobiographies (John McGahern’s Memoir, Hugo Hamilton’s The Speckled People, Seamus Deane’s Reading in the Dark and John Walsh’s The Falling Angels)
Stephen Regan

back on itself, both starting and ending at the foot of the stairs in a house overlooking the cathedral. There is no single linear narrative, but instead a proliferation of narrative 9780719075636_4_013.qxd 16/2/09 9:29 AM Page 237 ‘Sacred spaces’ 237 possibilities that have to do with the absence of any secure knowledge. The mental and emotional torment that fuses these different narrative strands arises when a boy so loves his parents that he wants to know everything about them, and in seeking to acquire that knowledge he uncovers a secret that bitterly

in Irish literature since 1990
Suzanne Conklin Akbari

tested in the fire, Rainald pays for his faith with his life. The emir, ‘in a towering rage because he could not make Rainald turn apostate’, causes all the Christians within his grasp in Antioch to be stripped naked and bound together in a circle: He then had chaff, firewood, and hay piled around them, and … ordered them put to the torch. The Christians, those knights of Christ, shrieked and screamed so that their voices resounded in heaven to God for whose love their flesh and bones were cremated.24 In the Siege of Melayne, the appearance of the ‘still’ and ‘colde

in Pulp fictions of medieval England
Susan Manning

enchantments, and by his single might checks this wave of progress, and even turns it back; sets the world in love with dreams and phantoms; with decayed and swinish forms of religion; with decayed and degraded systems of government; with the sillinesses and emptinesses, sham grandeurs, sham gauds, and sham chivalries of a brainless and worthless long-vanished society.5 Scott has entwined the South with ‘spells and charms’; Twain sets himself up as the champion who shall challenge and expose the sorcery. Unable to get round or past Scott’s enchantments (so I’ll argue

in Special relationships
Open Access (free)
Towards a contemporary aesthetic
Jonathan Dollimore

of traditional culture love to tell us that Marxism is obsolete, and heavy-duty continental theory just nonsense. That’s an argument for another day. I don’t rely on dubious theorists like Baudrillard, or even great ones like Adorno; I bypass this culture-wars stand-off by invoking George Steiner’s passionate and seminal essays of the 1960s collected as Literature and Silence. Steiner gives a blunt, untheoretical elaboration of Adorno’s argument: not only did the Nazis destroy ‘central European humanism’, but the barbarism of the twentieth century ‘prevailed on the

in The new aestheticism
Eric Pudney

ongoing civil wars (an incident closely resembling the story of Saul and the witch of Endor in i Samuel 28). In Sophonisba, however, Syphax comes looking for a love charm. Had Marston followed his source, this would have been easy enough for Erictho to provide. Lucan writes that A Thessalid’s spell can make passion unintended by Fate flow into hardened hearts, make crabbed old men burn with illicit flames. Theirs is a skill beyond mere noxious concoctions […] Couples bound neither by conjugal bliss nor by sweet beauty’s allure— these they have tied with the mystic

in Scepticism and belief in English witchcraft drama, 1538–1681
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James Schuyler
David Herd

thinks words are capable of; and to understand that intimacy one has to appreciate the intercessions of his mouth. Kissing Like another Schuyler collage, ‘“The Elizabethans Called It Dying”’, ‘Freely Espousing’ is, in one sense, a love poem. “‘The Elizabethans Called It Dying”’ is a poem of the upper East Side, in particular the stretch of Manhattan that looks across the East River to Welfare Island, now called Roosevelt Island. Digressing through the expressions, spoken or written, that emerge from that location – its capacity for acquaintance with the neighbourhood

in Enthusiast!
Open Access (free)
Jonathan Atkin

shared certain Christian and Socialist presuppositions, but neither Christianity nor Socialism was the substance of their pacifism’.6 From an early age, ‘his desire to serve humanity was strong’, E.M. Forster declared in his 1934 biography of Dickinson, though pointing out, in a statement tinged with Forster’s own post-war regret, that ‘love of humanity’ did not now (in the 1930s) carry with it the same promise that it had done in the previous century. In 1887, three years after obtaining a First in Classics, Dickinson was elected to a Fellowship at King’s College, his

in A war of individuals
The return of the repressed in Roddy Doyle’s Paula Spencer
Jennifer M. Jeffers

in media accounts as ‘Little Africa’. (Luke Gibbons, Beyond the Pale).2 In a recent, brief essay, ‘Green Yodel No. 1’, Roddy Doyle stresses that Irish identity is in an exciting period of transformation because of the influx of immigrants from such places as Nigeria, Latvia and China. Instead of a reactive response to preserve Irish homogeneity, Doyle welcomes the chance for the Irish ‘to invent new stories, new art, new voices, new music. . . . New love stories, family sagas, new jealousies, rivalries, new beginning and new endings. We live in exciting times, if

in Irish literature since 1990
Negotiating vanity
Faye Tudor

differentiation of herself as artist (the subject position) from her self as trope and theme for the male artist (the object position)’.8 James Shirley’s (1596–1666) short poem ‘To a Lady Upon a Looking-Glass Sent’ (1646) concentrates on the mirror’s association with self-love and pride: its speaker advises the young lady on the appropriate use for the mirror that MUP_Smith_Printer.indd 187 02/04/2015 16:18 [Image not available in this digital edition due to restrictions from the rights holder] 10 Sofonisba Anguissola, Self-Portrait (1554), Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna

in The senses in early modern England, 1558–1660
Open Access (free)
Beckett’s television plays and the idea of broadcasting
Jonathan Bignell

oblivion from which viewers might not ever escape.’14 Critics have valued Beckett’s television plays as ways for viewers to understand and explore problems of identity, death, love and meaning in general, countering assumptions about television’s role in cultural dumbing-down. Jonathan Kalb, for example, claims that ‘television has been dominated by the narrowly circumscribed formats of commercial programming since its birth, and those formats have contributed to egregious, worldwide psychological changes: shrinking attention spans, discouraging reading and encouraging

in Beckett and nothing